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East Texan Using Arts And Crafts To Help Homeless

There’s a lot of negative in the world so anytime we see someone doing good for others we love nothing more than shining a light on their kindness. Ferna Mills of Tyler is using her love for arts and crafts to help the homeless sleep better at night! She calls herself a bag lady because recently she has collected plastic bag after plastic bag making blankets and pillows out of them!

So far Ferna has been donating the completed pillows and blankets to Jesus Closet which is a Tyler group which helps the local homeless but she’s been teaching others the craft hoping to spread it wider. She says it takes about 750-800 bags to make a mat, straps, and pillow. The mats are a moisture and temperature barrier for those who must sleep on the ground, and every scrap of every bag is used with no waste. 100% recycled.

She’s not alone in this mission Donna Colosio Holmes organized the local group on Facebook: Plastic Bag Sleeping Mats.

Ferna tells us “I saw this on a news clip from another city. Then I researched some how-to’s on You Tube. I know I can’t fix the homeless problem but I can crochet and I can recycle bags into something useful. It gave me a passion even if I could only complete 1 mat.”

If you would like to help you can donate your plastic bags to Ferna by emailing her at

If you’re interested in making the blankets or pillows yourself I found a quick tutorial online showing you how… There’s a lot of other videos on YouTube as well!

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